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Unread 11-01-2010, 01:11 PM   #1
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Advice Needed: Turn it up...it's too loud

Hey everyone, I need the bass community's advice regarding the demands to turn it up only to hear it is too loud.

Here is the background:
*Church sanctuary has seating for 200ish, was designed to balcony that was never built (wide, not every deep, with high ceilings).
*Stage area is about 15ft deep and 60ish foot wide, wood floors.
* I was using the church's low wattage amp (can't recall model/size) but was being told by all that I couldn't be heard during worship.
* I replaced it with a Fender Bassman 250 (the one with the 15"). It is now on a riser facing the back wall, along with the lead guitarist's amp.
* Worship leader rearranged us so that I am now behind the rhythm guitarists (order from left to right is drums, piano, lead, rhythm & bass, choir...with praise singers in front).
* We're all volunteers.

So, in order for the lead guitarist and congregation to hear me, I've upped the volume. Since that time, I'm being told by the rhythm guitarists that it is making their chest hurt. I wished that we could all feed through the sanctuary mixer board which would make this a non-issue but I don't see that happening anytime soon.

Have any of you ever experienced this? Does anyone have advice or suggestions?

Thanks,
Chuck

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Unread 11-01-2010, 02:53 PM   #2
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I think you've effectively answered your own question here. The solution is to use something for personal monitoring and run a DI signal to the board.

That being said, I think the best solution for the time being would be to look at your current stage layout and adjust so that the rhythm guitarist is in the different location (perhaps swapping locations with the lead guitarist?)

Why exactly can't you feed through the main board? Not enough channels?
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Unread 11-01-2010, 03:40 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thesteve View Post
I think you've effectively answered your own question here. The solution is to use something for personal monitoring and run a DI signal to the board.

That being said, I think the best solution for the time being would be to look at your current stage layout and adjust so that the rhythm guitarist is in the different location (perhaps swapping locations with the lead guitarist?)

Why exactly can't you feed through the main board? Not enough channels?
It's not that simple. If the sound system at the church isn't able to reproduce the low end you need, then that isn't going to work. If your house system is able to make that work, go that way. Picking up a decent DI box isn't that expensive; you can get an MXR M-80 for about $80 used, and it is a fantastic sounding DI/Preamp.

If running into the main system isn't an option, you have a few choices to make. One would be to cut a bit of your low end. I would probably drop anything below about 100hz by a bit and boost your midrange (especially 350hz-500hz, and 800hz-1khz). This will help you stand out in the mix without actually adding volume or causing the woofiness that a really deep bass sound can produce. It may not sound as good solo, but in a mix, it will fit well.

Your other option is to ask the rhythm guitarist to move to a different area of the stage. You really ought to be right next to the drummer if you are able, so the two of you are able to lock in a little tighter.
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Unread 11-01-2010, 03:59 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bassman1185 View Post
It's not that simple. If the sound system at the church isn't able to reproduce the low end you need, then that isn't going to work. If your house system is able to make that work, go that way. Picking up a decent DI box isn't that expensive; you can get an MXR M-80 for about $80 used, and it is a fantastic sounding DI/Preamp.
Given the size of the building, I can't imagine the sound system option (unless it's remarkably pathetic, which is possible) is going to be a worse choice than trying to fill the room while facing an amp at the back wall.

The Bassman 250 has an XLR out on it for going direct. Any reasons you wouldn't recommend using that DI vs. getting something like an M-80?
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Unread 11-01-2010, 04:42 PM   #5
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Chest hurting?
Could it be that the volume is fine and you need to turn down the bass on the EQ?
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Unread 11-02-2010, 06:02 AM   #6
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Thanks to all for the advice. I'll try the EQ route for now and work on getting the leader to rearrange, again.

The reason for the delays on running it through the mixing board is that the connections in floor don't match the connections in the booth. There has to be plenty of extra space since it is a 24 channel board. The real issue is getting the "authorized" booth personnel who are not familiar with how a mixer board words to change since it works for them. After those hurdles, I do believe that the system can handle the lows.

Like I said, we are all volunteer staff and none of us were around when this system was installed and modified. From talking to older members, we lost all the in-house knowledge several years ago and as a result the new booth folks learned enough to mute the mics, adjust the volumes and take care of the slideshows.

Thanks again!
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Unread 11-02-2010, 07:46 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cewhite View Post
Thanks to all for the advice. I'll try the EQ route for now and work on getting the leader to rearrange, again.

The reason for the delays on running it through the mixing board is that the connections in floor don't match the connections in the booth. There has to be plenty of extra space since it is a 24 channel board. The real issue is getting the "authorized" booth personnel who are not familiar with how a mixer board words to change since it works for them. After those hurdles, I do believe that the system can handle the lows.

Like I said, we are all volunteer staff and none of us were around when this system was installed and modified. From talking to older members, we lost all the in-house knowledge several years ago and as a result the new booth folks learned enough to mute the mics, adjust the volumes and take care of the slideshows.

Thanks again!
It might be worth seeing if you can hire an outside A/V tech to show your sound crew how to make adjustments to the board and the system. I work at an A/V company, and we do stuff like that occasionally.

As far as the XLR output on your amp goes, you will probably be fine to use that, but you need to be careful with it. Many amp DIs are actually line-level, so that would be WAY hotter than the mic-level inputs that your sound crew is probably expecting. I was simply suggesting the M-80 as an option if you decided to ditch the amp altogether. If you're playing with drums and electric guitars, though, you will probably want to keep the amp there as a personal monitor.
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Unread 11-08-2010, 07:36 AM   #8
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Here is the update. The EQ changes stopped the rumbling and the grumbling but that was to be expected. Adjusting the mid's also solved the "I can't hear you problem" too. I may sneak the bass back in over the next few weeks. We'll see how much the recorder picked up when they release the sermon later today.

I'm still going to work towards using the outputs with the house system. I appears to be a quality systems (actually, it is overkill for what we are today). I'll heed Bassman's warning about levels when connecting to the mixer board. I'll double-check my line out levels before (and after) connecting.

Lastly, which forum(s) do y'all think would be the best to discuss stage arrangements?
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Unread 11-08-2010, 10:55 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cewhite View Post
Lastly, which forum(s) do y'all think would be the best to discuss stage arrangements?
Recording and Live Sound or Worship Leading.
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Unread 11-08-2010, 11:18 AM   #10
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Thanks. Will do.
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Unread 11-08-2010, 08:02 PM   #11
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hey man. i just wanted to ask u what church u go to? i live in alabama about 1 hr from b-ham. thanx god bless!!!!
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Unread 11-09-2010, 07:48 AM   #12
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I'm down at Indian Springs FBC near Oak Mountain. I haven't had a chance to make it up to that side of AL, yet.
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